Saturday, April 29, 2006

The Families Privacy?

The Conservative counter-argument, on the caskets controversy, revolves around the notion that they were simply respecting the privacy of the families. Which family would that be:
Thousands paid tribute Saturday as the first of four Canadian soldiers killed in Afghanistan was laid to rest.

And the father of Cpl. Matthew Dinning had some critical words for Prime Minister Stephen Harper. Dinning was remembered through a video presentation that also criticized how the federal government is handling the return of its fallen soldiers...

The presentation came to a close with footage of Matthew Dinning's remains returning to CFB Trenton, video the media had to gather by peering over a military fence because the Conservatives banned them from the airfield.

Mr. Dinning introduced the clip by saying it contained images Harper didn't want the public to see.

A new poll shows Canadians understand the true motivation:
The Ipsos Reid poll for CanWest News and Global National found that two-thirds of those surveyed feel a media ban on the homecoming of the flag-draped caskets of Canadian Forces personnel "is really a government muzzle and should be left up to families to decide."

We already know the government lied about who made the decision to ban the media, that it was pure politics afterall. It is striking how badly the Conservatives misread the reaction to their transparent attempt to copy the well-known Bush approach. Why they thought Canadians would accept this measure is beyond me and demonstrates some detachment from reality. Canadians will grieve every death in a profound way and on a national scale. It will be interesting to see how Harper reacts the next time.


HearHere said...

Apparently it was the family of Cpl. Payne who issued a statement that they would like to mourn in privacy.

In respect for the privacy of families the PMO is most unlikely to tell the media of any conversations they had with families - this would cause a feeding frenzy of the media then stalking these family members to confirm their comments.

The PM has called all families of the fallen soldiers. He did not "call the press" and make these heart wrenching phone calls into a photo op.

There are some things that are private in my opinion.

Maybe next time a pool photographer can take video footage and feed it to the media. Hopefully it would not include the intrusive close up footage of a widow sobbing over the coffin as they put in into the hurst like they did for Costell last month.

Like Mike Duffy said " these ceremonies are GREAT for our RATINGS" That is what this is all about after all. The profit driven unelected unaccountable media who have to make sure there are profits for their shareholders.

Do not believe any other motive.

Steve V said...


"Do not believe any other motive."

Steve V

"don't fall for the spin"

OTTAWA — The Harper government's controversial decision to ban the Canadian news media from ceremonies honouring repatriated war dead originated in the Prime Minister's Office and was made primarily for political reasons, multiple sources close to the government said yesterday.

"It was not [Defence Minister] Gordon O'Connor's idea," one said. "Exactly whose idea it was is somewhere in the Langevin Block."

Several sources close to the Prime Minister's Office said the strategy originated with Sandra Buckler, Prime Minister Stephen Harper's new communications director. She then sold it to Mr. Harper, arguing it would generate only "a week of bad publicity," after which it would be accepted as a fait accompli, sources said.

HearHere said...

Ahhhh, yes, so many stories these days about "multiple sources, un-named anonymous sources close to the PMO, a high ranking conservative who wishes to remain anonymous.

There was a time that when the media did not name the source of the comment or the source refused to be named that it was against media ethics to fabricate or report stories.

This is like Jean Chretien's nameless homeless guy that he invented so he could pretend he knew what homeless guys want.

There was also a time when media could be sued for making stories out of unsubstantiated unproved anonymour source tips...

the degradation of today's media into a self serving profit making machine for shareholders - damn the facts m'aam as long as we sell papers.

And you fall for it as long as the fabricated story from those numerous anonymous sources feed into your own preconceived biases - or in the case of the reporters they use this tactic to state their own opinions under the guise of investigative reporting.

I think lawyers are starting to line up to call a few of these story tellers.

The Liberals used our tax dollars to sue any media outlet that did not simply repeat their spin.

Perhaps it is time to do the same here.

Steve V said...


"There was also a time when media could be sued for making stories out of unsubstantiated unproved anonymour source tips."

I will be blunt. This government openly speaks, on the record, about its policies essentially being a means to attain a majority. Harper's hyper-politicism is accepted as fact. Why then, should anyone be surprised that the casket decision was articulated by the communications director. If you seriously believe this story was made up, then you are delusional about the nature of your man. If you want to paint the Globe and Mail, as though it is the National Enquirer, to maintain your warped perspective go ahead, but it makes you look like a fool grasping at straws.

Mike said...


According to both Lincoln Dinning and Jeff Leger, the Payne family could have simply requested their part of the ceremony be private - Cpl Payne could have been repatriated after the other and after the press had left.


Of course, that assertion - that the Payne family issued a statement - is not supporteed by the coverage we got here in Eastern Ontario. Many families members appeared on camera and no one objected to it.

This descision was made without consulting the families or the CF, as Lincioln Dinning shows. THAT is the problem.

Such transperency and openness in government. Fantastic.